Last Fast-Shot Comics Review for comics released in January 2015!
The picks for this week are: Bitch Planet #2, Jungle Book: Fall of The Wild #2, Robyn Hood #6, Wolverines #1-4, Gotham By Midnight #1-3 and Unity #13-14.
Slight lows on the reading this past week since I didn’t manage to finish either of the graphic novels I started this week, and generally didn’t read as many singles either, but I did manage to get through 35 of them, so that’s something, yeah?
For this week, I’d say that the surprise hits are Dungeons & Dragons: Legends of Baldur’s Gate #1 from IDW Publishing, Catwoman #35 and Secret Origins #6 from DC Comics and Predator: Fire and Stone #1 from Dark Horse Comics. The comics that win the “disappointment of the week award” are Grimm Fairy Tales: Dark Shaman #1 from Zenescope, Arkham Manor #1 and Sensation Comics #11 both from DC Comics. Ongoings like Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 10 #8, Aquaman #35, Tomb Raider #9 and Nancy A. Collins’ prelude Vampirella: Prelude To The Shadows #1 were all first-rate comics this week, and quite satisfactory as well.
The graphic novels I’m in the middle of at the moment are Supergirl Vol.4 by Michael Alan Nelson and Diogenes Neves, and The Flash Vol.2 by Brian Buccellato and Francis Manapul.
Thankfully, I’m finally settling back into the groove with comics reading and, most importantly, comics reviewing, as I managed to review a fair bit of titles this week and even caught up with reviewing some previous titles that I’ve unfortunately had to neglect for one reason or another.
The surprise hits of this week were Cartoon Network: Super Secret Crisis War: Billy and Mandy #1 from IDW Publishing, Wolverine Annual #1 from Marvel Comics and Vampirella #3 from Marvel Comics. The surprise flop of the week would be Batman: Eternal #20 from DC where the title seems headed downwards just when it was getting once again, and The Wicked + The Divine #3 from Image where the title took a nosedive this week after a second issue that was really good. No graphic novels again sadly, though I hope to correct that that this week. I hope..
This has been a year of change for Zenescope Entertainment. To celebrate the landmark issue Grimm Fairy Tales #100, the publisher organized a massive crossover event, Age of Darkness that has seen the foundations of the Grimmverse changed forever as the Dark Queen and the Dark One have laid siege to all the realms and even proven victorious in the landmark issue itself. I’ve followed Age of Darkness for a fait bit and I’m mostly caught up with the event, largely because it is an event quite unlike that from the Big 2 and because it is excellent reading as well.
Spinning out of the pages of the recent events Wonderland: Clash of Queens and Age of Darkness, real changes are being made to all the realms, the first of which is that Calie Liddle is now the White Queen of Wonderland and is determined to make Wonderland a safe place finally and Sela Mathers is no longer the guardian of the Nexus exactly. Troy Brownfield does a good job in the first two issues of Grimm Fairy Tales vs Wonderland to create a compelling enough reasons for Calie and Sela to go head-to-head and then team-up, and I liked this new look at both characters. The artwork by Luca Claretti is also pretty decent, with some good action every now and then.
After all the heavy reading of the previous weeks, this past week proved to be a little less intensive, but not by much. The only real difference this time was that I didn’t get to read any graphic novels or trades. And I only just managed to read all these comics anyways because things are getting hectic here with all the marriage preparations, not to mention the court marriage I had the other day (yes, officially married now!). So yeah, things are just a little bit really hectic.
The surprise hits of this week were 7th Sword #1 from IDW Publishing, Harley Quinn #6 from DC Comics, and Dejah of Mars #1 from Dynamite Entertainment. The surprise flops would be Batman #31 and The Flash #31, both from DC Comics, both of them quite disappointing in that the arcs do not make sense anymore and I’m really turned off of them. Comics that I expected to be great, such as Ms. Marvel #4 from Marvel and Thanos Annual 2014, also from Marvel, and Future’s End #4 from DC Comics, were all good, amongst others. So a nice spread of everything, as usual.
This has been the month where I really delve into Zenescope’s Age of Darkness crossover event and so far it has been quite a fun ride for me. Having read the first Neverland volume back in late 2012, the publisher’s Neverland: Age of Darkness series has proven to be quite an interesting return, and having read quite a few of Zenescope’s other titles like Robyn Hood and Realm Knights in the last couple weeks, I am definitely enjoying getting back into Zenescope comics from both a story and art perspective. It also goes without saying that I do enjoy this particular take on the Peter Pan fairy tales.
Neverland: Age of Darkness #1 was set much, much after the events of Neverland Vol.1 and thus a lot had happened in the meantime. I am still not caught up, but having read a few of the ancillary titles from Zenescope, I’ve begun to gain a small understanding of what has happened, and it helps that writers Joe Brusha and Dan Wickline give the reader enough to go on and not disorient them from what is happening. In the second issue, we pick up from where the previous one left off and see as Cross and his team make it through to Neverland and the dangers beyond. While the story was fairly decent, the art seemed to suffer this time and wasn’t as pleasant an experience as before.
Another week of more than 20 comics read, and this week I went for something a bit different and tried to read as many of the comics from the Big 2 as I could since I’m a bit behind on that score and needed to catch up. But that wasn’t all of course, since I also got a start on IDW’s Star Trek and finished up Dynamite’s Kings Watch among other titles.
The surprise hit of this week would definitely be Nailbiter #1 from Image Comics and Neverland: Age of Darkness #1 from Zenescope whereas the surprise flops would be Marvel’s Cyclops #1 and DC’s Batman: Eternal #5. No idea what is going on with those titles, although I hope that they both improve. Series that I expected to be good, such as DC’s The Movement #12 and Marvel’s Black Widow, were what I wanted them to be and that pleases me immensely. And Dynamite’s Kings Watch should rate a mention since the series ended on a high with the last two issues. No graphic novels this week, as I was a bit too cramped for time otherwise, but hopefully the new week will be different.
Having recently read Zenescope’s Helsing #1 and Grimm Fairy Tales #0 FCBD 2014, I’ve gotten really interested in the publisher’s Age of Darkness crossover went. Looking at the event’s release schedule, the list of titles and issues is quite large, so I can’t feasibly cover everything, but that’s part of the fun of this event. Looking for a good place to start, I decided to get back to the publisher’s Neverland series since when I first read the series’ first volume, I was fairly impressed with it. A lot has happened in the Neverland realm since I was last there, but that too is part of the fun, since the changes are always intriguing.
Neverland: Age of Darkness #1 features some characters I don’t recognise, especially Nathan Cross who is the protagonist of the series it seems, but then, that didn’t bother me over much. All I wanted to do after reading this issue was t read some of the backissues of the series so that I could be caught up to this point. Tall order I know, but doable eventually, I think. It also helps that Joe Brusha and Dan Wickline’s writing is fairly top-notch here and that the artwork by Luca Claretti and Co. is almost on the same level as well.